Strategy-Driven Leadership : The Playbook for Developing Your Next Generation of Leaders book cover
1st Edition

Strategy-Driven Leadership
The Playbook for Developing Your Next Generation of Leaders

ISBN 9780367332266
Published November 4, 2019 by Productivity Press
200 Pages 25 B/W Illustrations

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USD $39.95

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Book Description

It’s estimated that U.S. companies spend over $14 billion annually on leadership development --Match that number to the abundant and growing research that finds most leadership development to be ineffective, and the conclusion is a phenomenal amount of waste. The remedy for this situation is to have business strategy drive leadership development instead of creating programs that match a one-size-fits-all approach to leadership. This book's approach, called Strategy-Driven Leadership Development (SDLD), puts business strategy first. It maintains an emphasis on building leadership programs around what it will take to make the business successful as opposed to implementing a program in the hopes that it will benefit the strategy.

The result is a differentiated and targeted approach called Intentional Leadership Development, which provides the structure for transforming how leadership development is undertaken. At the heart of this book, however, is the explanation of how small, incremental changes in action and perspective create meaningful changes in the way leadership is developed. The focus is on the leadership behaviors associated with success for any company. Some companies may need leaders with better financial acumen while others may require better teamwork for success. These skills are learnable and when the energy of an organization is behind it, then leadership development can be transformational.

The authors method "retools" prior leadership efforts – the emphasis is not on previous failures and restarting with new programs. There are many effective ideas and actions that are currently embedded in leadership programs, but they miss the critical element of tying their efforts to the business strategy.

Strategy-Driven Leadership changes the way organizations think about and drive their leadership talent initiatives among their current and upcoming leaders. The book is filled with research, science-based information, case studies, and practical hands-on tools on why and how this Strategy-Driven Leadership Development model will transform company leadership approaches.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Strategy-Driven Leadership Development (SDLD) Chapter 2: The Foundations of Strategy-Driven Leadership Development Chapter 3: Organization Demand: Strategy and Leadership Skills Chapter 4: Assessing Organizational and Leadership Capability Chapter 5: The Solution: Intentional Development Chapter 6: The Intentional Development Process Chapter 7: Coaching Retooled: Building a Cadre of Intentional Coaches Chapter 8: Gauging Impact: Evaluating Intentional Development and Talent Analytics Chapter 9: The Strategy-Driven Leadership Journey Chapter 10: Conclusion: Retooling Leadership Development

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Michael Couch has made a career out of improving the effectiveness of organizations, as an internal consultant, a business executive, and now in his own consulting practice. Starting from a graduate degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology, he has over 30 years experience working on a wide range of organization challenges at the team, facility, division and corporate levels.

In additional to his talent management and organization effectiveness background, Michael has the unique experience of being the Managing Director for a Strategic Business Unit as well as heading up Manufacturing, including Customer Service, Materials Management, Production Planning, Inventory Management and Logistics. He has over 25 years experience with continuous improvement initiatives, from Quality Circles to Lean Six Sigma, and has led company-wide Lean Manufacturing implementations. He is a Certified Six Sigma Green Belt and Champion.

His expert facilitation skills have been applied to strategic planning, change management, team development, process improvement, project planning and problem solving situations. Michael is certified in Compression Planning® by The Compression Planning Institute. He has designed and facilitated sessions of all types – from small teams to groups over 200, from short 1- 2 hour sessions to multi-day events – in a wide variety of industries.

Since its founding in 2007, Michael Couch & Associates Inc. has served over 50 clients in a wide variety of industries, both domestic and global, and for-profit and non-profit.

Michael is a certified Human Capital Strategist by the Human Capital Institute and a Senior Professional in HR by the Society for Human Resources Management.

You can learn more about Michael at his website:


Richard Citrin bridges the gap between business and psychology. He draws on his deep experience as a health care entrepreneur, clinician, corporate executive and leadership coach to present his insights and ideas in a practical and powerful manner that creates dramatic change and success for his clients.

His unique perspective on leadership, talent development, and how we learn and grow from challenges is based on the idea that by using our strengths, talents and skills, and by aligning them in a purposeful and powerful manner, real change occurs.

Richard has published over 30 professional and popular articles, is a frequent speaker and his ideas have appeared on the pages of Forbes, Fortune and the New York Times. Richard’s 2 prior books, The Resilience Advantage and How to Get a Job in Dallas/Fort Worth provided his readers with information that helped them transform their professional and personal lives.

Richard began Citrin Consulting in 2010 and has worked with companies as large a Goodyear Tire and Rubber and PNC Bank and as small as his local community Food Bank and regional United Way.


"In Strategy-Driven Leadership, Michael and Richard mark the route that every leader can take to assume the mantle of building that next generation for their business. Theirs is an insightful, practical and evidenced-based approach to developing the leaders our society needs now and in the future!"

Marshall Goldsmith, New York Times #1 bestselling author of Triggers, Mojo, and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There Thinkers 50 #1 Executive Coach for 10 years

"Too often there’s a gap between what leadership development programs promise and what they actually deliver. Thank goodness, then, for Couch and Citrin. They begin with your organization's business strategy, build skills through actual experiences, and give readers an evidence-based process that delivers results. "

Daniel H. Pink, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Boston Globe, and Amazon #1 bestselling author of WHEN, DRIVE, and TO SELL IS HUMAN

"This book is a welcome sign of the times, addressing globalization, coaching, technology, and the integration of strategy. It is not, thankfully, a book of labels, and behavioral predictions, and cute descriptors of one’s demeanor, which I find degrading and useless. Instead, it’s a very thoughtful book for the mature leader to assess future conditions, needs, and new, potential leaders. It doesn’t replace human judgment but rather augments it with solid methodology for assessment and selection. . . . Couch and Citrin have certainly gained my respect with this insightful work.

Alan Weiss, PhD,Author, Million Dollar Consulting and more than 60 other books,Hall of Fame Inductee: National Speakers Association, Lifetime Achievement Award: American Press Institute 

"A must read for every CEO and CHRO frustrated by the elusive search for ready-now leaders who can actually execute a strategy and drive results."

Nancy Kukovich, President and CEO, AdelphoiUSA

"Strategy-Driven Leadership is a practical guide to defining, developing and assessing the point in time leadership competencies an organization needs to produce desired business outcomes. It illustrates the connection between leadership behaviors and business performance and provides a framework for defining, assessing, and developing a path forward for closing gasps and improving business outcomes."

Sherry Neubert, Chief Information Officer, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company

"Transformation is an urgent business requirement and Strategy-Driven Leadership is fundamental to that transformation. Michael and Richard have written a must read for those interested in adopting integrated strategies to accelerate the advancement of tomorrow’s leaders."

James E. Taylor, Ph.D.,Chief Diversity, Inclusion, and Talent Management Officer,University of Pittsburgh Medical Center 

"We often make the mistake of thinking that leaders are born, not made. But every leader has the opportunity to grow and improve -- and Strategy-Driven Leadership provides the roadmap for organizations to develop their next generation of talent. Read this book, apply it, and watch how your company grows."

Dorie Clark, Author of Reinventing You, Entrepreneurial You and Stand Out, Executive Education Faculty, Duke University Fuqua School of Business

"Strategy-Driven Leadership is a must read for anyone who is interested in finding a research based practical approach to build the leadership muscle of a team, a division or an entire enterprise. Richard and Michael have developed a robust theoretical framework but perhaps even more importantly they go beyond just a framework and actually provide the tools to deploy this unique framework to grow the talent of the emerging leaders in a way that synchronizes with the strategic intent of your company."

Aradhna Malhotra Oliphant, President and CEO, Leadership Pittsburgh Inc.

"We have utilized aspects of Strategy-Driven Leadership and it has significantly enhanced our pipeline of leaders. You will find the approach and tools invaluable in growing your current and future leaders."

Stephanie Doliveira, VP of Human Resources, Sheetz Inc.

"Compelling, practical, and wise! Strategy-Driven Leadership fills a gap in our understanding of how to make leadership development really work."

Suzanne Bates, CEO, Bates Communications Inc., Author of All the Leader You Can Be, The Science of Achieving Extraordinary Executive Presence